Let me start out by saying Ive been an engineer and producer for years now and Ive learned a thing or two. In this post Ill be covering ways you can get more done in less time and unleash your potential as an artist.
- Be Prepared – Dont wait to get in the studio to write your lyrics and learn them in front of a mic.Get your beats beforehand and write and rewrite till you get the lyrics perfect. Then hit the lab.
- Leave the Drink at Home – The studio aint a party, dont treat it like one
- The same four songs – My Women, My Car, How Fly Am I, and I sell alot of drugs – stop just stop. This subject matter is played out fam. Get creative and write outside your comfort zone and witness the beast you will unleash from within. People are dying to hear new and inventive artists, why not be one of them? Is this an opinion? Yes, but as soon as an engineer hears this song, they go into autopilot mode and may not take this session as seriously as you want.
- Learn Pro Tools – just the basics really, stop , play , record and navigation is all you really need. Your engineer might step out for a break but you can still go, replay a part or isolate a vocal for playback, plus you can get an idea if your engineer is riding the clock or on top of his job. And most can appreciate an artist whos know his craft.
- Focus – Throw your friends out into the lounge. Distractions can be time consuming for you and your engineer. Remember, this isnt a party. Listening is for after you are done, not while you are recording.
- Use your own mic – This alone can help establish “YOUR SOUND” as an artist, and you will sound more consistent across your projects and over time , especially when you are using different studios. I dont mean go and spend your tax refund on $1000 plus mic , but there are really great mics out there for less than 100$ used and ~150-300 new. While you are at it, pickup a set of good headphones as well. Having a comfortable set makes you comfortable, and you dont have 1000 sessions of sweat and funk on each side of your head in the booth.
- Dont Flake – Dont show up late or noshow nocall. Never do this to your engineer because this is time he cannot get back. He will be reluctant to book you again , and you may get a crappy record next time you are back.
I know this is not as detailed as I would like to go , and I will be expanding this content over the next few weeks, but Im going to leave you with this. I hope this helps you in some way and Im always open to suggestion from you for things to add.
I was on one of my promo accounts this morning and run across an engineer out in LA who had some thoughts on this subject:
As you can see , Im not alone in this sentiment. We are not taking you serious if you waste your own time. We get paid either way. Expect our Apathetic Attention.
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